Why was Kes written off the show?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by Kooz, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. You_Will_Fail

    You_Will_Fail Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2010
    Location:
    Trill, Federation World and Proud
    Kenneth Biller said that he thought it was a pity Kes left because there were so many possibilities for her given her unique lifespan and abilities, so I don't believe the writers couldn't come up with story ideas for her.
    As for them not knowing which direction to go with the character....they didn't know which direction to go with hardly any of the characters! What "direction" did Chakotay, Harry, Neelix or Tuvok go in exactly from season 4.....except into the background. And even Janeway, while getting a lot of screentime, didn't seem to be getting much direction. I just think Taylor didn't like the character of Kes and decided to get rid of her, it was easier to write lines of dialogue for characters like Chakotay and Harry because they could be given filler lines or technobabble lines each episode. Kes actually had to be given her own stories or worked into other stories and that obviously required more effort. I don't think it was a question of "can't", simply "can't be bothered".
     
  2. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    inside teacake
    Not sure what direction a character like Tuvok would go in. He's a Vulcan so not going to have a big angsty time about being lost in the DQ. He's married with children so not going to have any relationship development. He's not a hotshot so not going to have any issues with wanting to do something he's not ready to do. Vulcans are a bit painted into corners unless them make them vulnerable like Spock or T'Pol. The Big Vulcan Storyline is always Pon Farr.

    They did do some development with him and Neelix however, good character development for Tuvok to come to grips with his negative emotions and how it was effecting his crew interaction. This theme wasn't a one off ep either so I'd say Neelix and Tuvok were used to good effect as a duo.
     
  3. exodus

    exodus Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2003
    Location:
    The Digital Garden
    Those with actual power behind the show disagree.
    That that solid fact trumps any opinions we may have.
     
  4. exodus

    exodus Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2003
    Location:
    The Digital Garden
    QFT.:bolian:
     
  5. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2007
    Location:
    in a figment of a mediocre mind's imagination

    no, they said that apparently after the fact, and after coming close to dumping Wang first. So that doesn't hold a lot of credibility. Again, if someone can point out stuff said about her being hard to write for long before the fourth season, then I could buy that argument a little more.
     
  6. Lynx

    Lynx Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2001
    Location:
    Lynx Empire
    Just because someone has power or is in charge doesn't mean that this person is right or is telling the truth.
     
  7. doubleohfive

    doubleohfive Fleet Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2001
    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    Likewise, just because you think there were more stories for Kes to be written and told, it does not necessarily follow that those persons in charge of writing the show felt the same way.

    The writers could have, easily, determined that there were in fact no more stories to be told and chose to write her out of the series and in their capacity as the showrunners and writers would still be absolutely right to do so.

    As for "having the power" or "telling the truth," well to begin with, the showrunner is the king of the castle on a show. They're the voice, the head of the table and they make the big decisions. And for something like this, they'd likely have to sell it to the studio and network executives, so if you want to blame anyone, you better start blaming them as well.

    Lastly, "telling the truth"? Seriously? Is this such a matter of import that even if the writers were lying (which I sincerely believe they weren't), we're going to sit around and point fingers?

    Screw that. It's a goddamn TV show. Get some perspective.
     
  8. Lynx

    Lynx Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2001
    Location:
    Lynx Empire
    The interesting thing is that the loss of the ability to write for Kes was very sudden. They were actually coming up with stories where Kes played an important part up to the last minute of her presence on board (I'm not counting "The Gift" since that one was a sad mess, written with the only purpose to get rid of the character as soon as possible, no matter how unrealistic the story was).

    And only because someone has the power or is in charge, they are not above criticizm. In fact, it's our right as fans and supporters of the show to criticize what we think is wrong. After all, we did help to keep them in charge for seven years just by watching the show.
     
  9. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    inside teacake
    I agree with Lynx that saying, "we're gonna axe Wang" in one breath and "we ran out of stories so it's Kes instead" in another is not really adding up when we know a People magazine poll was behind the change. What was the time frame between the Wang axe and the reversal of the decision and deciding to axe Kes instead?
     
  10. Enterprise is Great

    Enterprise is Great Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2004
    They were probably going to get rid of both of them...Wang in Scorpion part 2 and Kes some episodes later in season 4. Wang only got spared because he got picked by People magazine as on the most beautiful. Otherwise his unprofessional behavior was getting his ass canned.
     
  11. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2004
    Location:
    New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
    Perhaps because they weren't getting the performances they imagined? I dunno, but I do know several people who worked with her found her rather tricky to communicate with. Some actors and characters just fail to click with the writing team.

    As I mentioned, you can see them tinkering with Kes all through the series: her "elogium", the break up with Neelix, moving from gardening to nursing, discovering powers, pairing her with the EMH, then Tuvok, changing her hair and costuming, etc.

    They really didn't have to rationalize anything about her dismissal. The producers had to let a character go in order to be able to afford to add Jeri Ryan. They narrowed down to the two characters/actors that caused them problems (be they discipline problems or writing problems, or whatever) and chose Lien to go when Wang got the "People" accolade. The writers say the character was hard to write for, and the many changes to the character over the years seems to bear that out.

    Similarly, they let Gates McFadden go in TNG. Publicly, the character "wasn't working" and they recast for a different approach to the CMO. As we found out later, there was friction on the set caused by delays due to McFadden's very fine hair losing its style under the hot lights (hence the choice of expensive wigs when she returned), plus the eventual declaration from the actress that there had been friction between her and someone on high in production.

    Similarly, TOS let Grace Lee Whitney go. Publicly, the character "wasn't necessary" and they wanted Kirk not to be tied down to one romantic interest. As we found out later, from the actress, there had been an addiction to diet pills, and ah... friction between her and someone on high in production.

    No, it doesn't "settle" anything. Wang was also causing a series of difficulties - supposedly not turning up on time, despite warnings, not being on hand to do the off-screen lines when a dialog partner was on camera, and refusing to do his "homework" shadowing the director when he was pressing to be allowed to direct.

    When Wang wasn't able to be let go, they then had to choose another. The writers could probably see plenty of story possibilities for everyone else, and less for Kes. They'd already tried a range of stories with her, leaving perhaps only Miracle Life-Expectancy Extension to go, in order to avoid latex age makeups. Lien was supposedly already allergic to her ear tips, which is why they let Kes let her hair down.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  12. Jetfire

    Jetfire Guest

    Q: Why was Kes written off the show?
    A: Too many babes...someone had to go with the arrival of our new Borg Goddess. :adore: ;)

    Gotta keep the Captain...our Klingon huntress can't go...86 the Ocampa elf. :(
     
  13. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2000
    Location:
    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    if they were firing both of them, then they we'ren't going to replace him with a new regular cast member.

    The lien money could have gone all over?

    SFX one week, wardrobe the next and a few extras the following...

    Once they saw how that worked, they could just keep firing actors till it's just seven and the doctor and a mountain of sfx.
     
  14. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2004
    Location:
    New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
    I see the many changes to her character as signs the writers were scratching on how to use the character effectively.

    Interviews around the time of "Warlord", IIRC. Breaking up Neelix and Kes was an attempt to liven/freshen things up a bit, since negative viewer reaction to the sexually immature Kes (until "Elogium") and "dirty old man" Neelix was causing concern.
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2012
  15. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    inside teacake
    You have just destroyed the one thing I loved about Crusher. Destroyed it.
     
  16. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    inside teacake
    You left someone out.
     
  17. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2004
    Location:
    New Therin Park, Andor (via Australia)
    What, you thought the wigs she wore from Seasons Three through Seven were her own hair?
     
  18. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2000
    Location:
    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    My cogent paradigm was intended to illustrate that TPTB are batshit.

    And Therin, if most men were capable if identifying "wigs" as ridiculous and obvious, women wouldn't bother with them because they'd be fools to want to seem ridiculous and obvious, and as a certain aside, if most men could identify wigs as ridiculous and obvious the toupee industry would be bankrupt yesterday.

    So what's Teacakes excuse for being suckered by a ridiculous and obvious wig, since she's part of the conspiracy to temporarily retrofit women to the detriment of a competing sex?
     
  19. teacake

    teacake Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Location:
    inside teacake
    Yep. I was also shocked to learn that TOS used styrofoam rocks.
     
  20. Guy Gardener

    Guy Gardener Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2000
    Location:
    In the lap of squalor I assure you.
    Half those rocks were dildos if I believe the avatars in these forums.